Most Active Stories
Sun September 23, 2012
Finding Consecutively Good TV Shows
Originally published on Sat October 6, 2012 10:46 pm
On-air challenge: Every answer is the name of a TV show, past or present. Each can be found in consecutive letters in the sentences read. Name the TV shows. For example, in the sentence, "We watched the acrobat many times," the hidden TV show is BATMAN. Hint: Each answer has at least six letters.
Last week's challenge from listener Ed Pegg Jr.: Think of something that the majority of adults buy. It's a two-word phrase with 10 letters in the first word and nine in the second. This phrase uses each of the five vowels (A, E, I, O and U) exactly twice. What familiar product is this?
Answer: Automobile Insurance
Winner: Maggie Waltz of Ann Arbor, Mich.
Next week's challenge from listener Sandy Weisz in Chicago: Name two parts of the human body. Put them together one after the other. Change the seventh letter in the result to the next letter of the alphabet to name something that's often found in books. What is it?
If you know the answer to next week's challenge, submit it here. Listeners who submit correct answers win a chance to play the on-air puzzle. Important: Include a phone number where we can reach you Thursday at 3 p.m. Eastern.
LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer. And it is time for the puzzle.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
WERTHEIMER: And joining me now is WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle-master Will Shortz. Good morning, Will.
WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Linda.
WERTHEIMER: Now, Will, could you remind us about the challenge from last week?
SHORTZ: Yes. It came from listener Ed Pegg, Jr. I said think of something that the majority of adults buy. It's a two-word phrase with 10 letters in the first word, nine letters in the second. And I said this phrase uses each of the five vowels - A, E, I, O, and U - exactly twice. What familiar product is it? And the answer was automobile insurance.
WERTHEIMER: And almost 1,500 listeners figured that out. Our winner this week is Maggie Waltz of Ann Arbor, Michigan. And she joins us by telephone. Congratulations, Maggie.
MAGGIE WALTZ: Thank you.
WERTHEIMER: So, was this a tough one?
WALTZ: No. It took me about five minutes.
WERTHEIMER: How'd you do it?
WALTZ: Well, we were on our way to church and I saw a billboard advertising buy cheaper auto insurance.
WERTHEIMER: And at that moment...
SHORTZ: You're so lucky.
WERTHEIMER: ...you got it.
WALTZ: I got lucky.
WERTHEIMER: So, what do you do in Ann Arbor?
WALTZ: I'm a musician. I play the bass.
WERTHEIMER: The upright bass, one of those big guys?
WALTZ: I have three basses, depending if I'm doing jazz, classical or rock theater.
WERTHEIMER: And I take it you also do the New York Times crossword in your spare time.
WALTZ: Actually, yes. I've been doing New York Times crossword puzzle every day for the last 35 years.
WERTHEIMER: That even predates you, Will.
SHORTZ: That does. I've only been at the paper 19 years.
WERTHEIMER: So, Will, you obviously have a fan here. And since she fills it in every day, do you have any tips or hints or anything for Maggie?
SHORTZ: Well, I don't think Maggie needs any hints. You know, the puzzles get harder as the week goes on. I will mention though that I have a special contest crossword coming up in the Sunday New York Times in late October. So, watch for that. It'll be pretty cool.
WERTHEIMER: So, Maggie, are you ready to play our puzzle?
WALTZ: Yes, I guess so.
SHORTZ: All right, Maggie. Every answer today is the name of a TV show - past or present...
WALTZ: Oh, no. I don't watch TV.
SHORTZ: You don't need to watch TV. You should know most or all of these. I'm going to read you some sentences. Each TV show name can be found in consecutive letters in the sentence. You name the shows. For example, if I said we watched the acrobat many times, you would say Batman, because it's hidden inside acrobat many.
SHORTZ: All right. And here's a hint: each answer has at least six letters. Number one: the straw hid everything.
SHORTZ: Rawhide - so fast. Number two: the desert is not the environs I desire. And my general hint on these is always home in on the part of the sentence that sounds the most awkward. Specifically here, environs I desire.
WALTZ: Oh, Ironside.
SHORTZ: Ironside is it. The waitress always forgets martinis.
WALTZ: Get Smart.
SHORTZ: Get Smart, good. Did you wear that sandal last week? This is one of the biggest shows of the '80s.
WALTZ: Any hints, Linda?
WERTHEIMER: Happened in Texas.
WALTZ: Oh, Dallas.
SHORTZ: Dallas - inside sandal last. Good. The kids gave daddy nasty looks.
WERTHEIMER: I think this is very hard, Will.
SHORTZ: It's hard to visualize in the mind. Some people find it easy, some don't. But it's hidden inside daddy nasty.
SHORTZ: Dynasty is it. To save your marriage, you'll have to restart, rekindle your romance. To save your marriage, you'll have to restart, rekindle your romance.
WALTZ: Star Trek.
SHORTZ: Star Trek is it, good. OK. Here's your last one. Jose, after seeing what the Mexican did, came racing over. Jose, after seeing what the Mexican did, came racing over.
WALTZ: Candid Camera.
SHORTZ: Candid Camera is it.
WERTHEIMER: Wow. That is very good.
SHORTZ: Not bad for someone who doesn't watch TV.
WERTHEIMER: Great job, Maggie. And for playing our puzzle today, you will get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin as well as puzzle books and games. You can read all about it at npr.org/Puzzle. What's your public radio station, Maggie?
WALTZ: WEMU, Ypsilanti, Michigan.
WERTHEIMER: Maggie Waltz of Ann Arbor, Michigan, thank you for playing the puzzle this week.
WERTHEIMER: OK, Will. We are ready for the new challenge. What do you have to stump us with next week?
SHORTZ: Well, we'll see how stumper-ish it is. It comes from listener Sandy Weiss of Chicago. Name two parts of the human body, put them together, one after the other. Change the seventh letter in the result to the next letter of the alphabet, to name something that's often found in books. What is it?
So again, two parts of the human body. Put them together, one after the other. Change the seventh letter in the result to the next letter of the alphabet, to name something that's often found in books. What part is it?
WERTHEIMER: When you have the answer, go to our website, npr.org/puzzle and click on the Submit Your Answer link - just one entry per person, please. The deadline for entries is Thursday at 3 P.M. Eastern. Please include a telephone number where we can reach you at about that time. And if you are the winner, we will give you a call, and you'll get to play on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle-master, Will Shortz.
Now, Will, this is our last week together for a while. Rachel Martin returns to the host's chair next week. It's been fun playing the puzzle with you.
WERTHEIMER: Thanks, Will.
SHORTZ: Thanks, Linda.
(SOUNDBITE OF THEME MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.